Different Types of Mold Testing Techniques Explained

There are typically four techniques of mold testing available to all mold assessors and inspectors. These levels include: non-intrusive visual inspection, swabs, tapes, bulk samples, air sampling and intrusive.

A non-intrusive visual inspection is considered the lowest level of confirmation of mold, however, when visual confirmation cannot be made, the next level of confirmation of mold would be scientific, which includes swabs, tapes, bulk samples and air sampling, and then intrusive.

Swabs, tapes and bulk samples are considered the lowest form of scientific confirmation as it only addresses a small localized area of possible mold growth. Swabs, tapes and bulk samples are capable of identifying mold types, but typically do not indicate the size of a mold contamination even though a lab technician will state their opinion of growth size based on the parts of mold structures found. Some dry or dormant molds found on building materials can be tested, however, may be non-viable and do not greatly impact or contaminate the air.

Air sampling is considered the highest level of scientific confirmation as it not only confirms the presence of mold spores and types from several locations at once, it also indicates the quantified amount of mold spores in the air. This information can then be interpreted to understand the potential impact to health as mold spores caught in the air can be inhaled into the lungs. Mold spores found in the air are typically viable, meaning a living source or indoor reservoir exists.

Intrusive would require physically removing building materials until the mold contamination is found. Intrusive is typically the last resort.

Bald Eagle Inspection Services, LLC provides a wide range of mold testing services, including professional Indoor Air Quality Testing

Bald Eagle Inspection Services, LLC is an International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI) Certified Professional Inspector, a National Association of Mold Remediators & Inspectors (NAMRI) Certified Professional Inspector and an International Association of Certified Indoor Air Consultants Certified Professional Inspector.

 InterNACHI Professional #15120411 – NAMRI Professional #415946 – IAC2 #04-6656

To book an inspection, visit www.baldeagle.biz

2 thoughts on “Different Types of Mold Testing Techniques Explained”

  1. I have a 500 sq.’ condo that I had tested for mold by MOLD TEST Co. with air sampling and a swab off my air duct grill. It was sent to EMSL Analytical, Inc. in Florida and came back with nothing flagged “high” except “yeast-like” from the swab.
    My Cladosporium count was 100 outside and 220 inside. My Myxomycetes was 40 outside and 350 inside. My Hyphal fragment was “low”. The form said Mycotoxin results: not performed and Endotoxin results: Not performed.
    The recommendation was: Mold Remediation is required. Is this justified in your opinion? I have been having respiratory problems at night and this was my last resort. I feel like they are taking advantage of me according to your mold charts. Please advise. Thank you.


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